The Other McCain

"One should either write ruthlessly what one believes to be the truth, or else shut up." — Arthur Koestler

Media Headwinds, Media Tailwinds

Posted on | December 27, 2010 | 5 Comments

Ace of Spades describes a basic truth of American politics:

The liberal media sells liberal candidates as brilliant and even-tempered and “sophisticated” and “nuanced” of thought; all of these are non-ideological attributes which appeal to most, whatever one’s politics. And they need to do this, as only about 25% of the country can be persuaded to come along on the basic liberal message of higher taxes, more spending, more government power to dictate the affairs of men, and less freedom.
Meanwhile, Republican candidates get the opposite treatment from the media. I’ve noted before that every single Republican candidate is claimed by the media to be:

1. Stupid
2. Evil
3. Crazy
4. Out-of-touch

…and pretty much you can categorize every Republican office-seeker since Eisenhower (Out of touch) in this way. Nixon: Evil and Crazy; Reagan: Stupid and Crazy and possibly Evil; Bush I: Out of touch; Bush II: Stupid, Crazy, Out of Touch and Evil.

Brilliant as it is, Ace’s post doesn’t exhaust the endless variety of ways in which the media help elect Democrats. For instance, when Democrats are in office, the media can simply ignore the existence of opposition.

During the recent midterm congressional campaign, many Republican candidates were quite nearly ignored by local media. In fact, if you had been reading local newspapers in some key competitive districts, you’d have scarcely known there was an election coming up — much less that the incumbent Democrat was locked in a fight for his political life.

And this kind of non-coverage continued until the folks picked up their paper the Wednesday morning after Election Day and saw — for the first time in a front-page headline — the name of the previously ignored Republican who’d just gotten elected to Congress.

Those of us who followed the recent election might have thought, for example, that Orlando-area papers would have covered the FL-8 race between Alan Grayson and Daniel Webster the way the Tuscaloosa News covers the University of Alabama football team: Exhaustively, as the only game in town.

But it wasn’t that way at all and, with few exceptions, local newspaper coverage of campaigns in the top 70 or 80 competitive congressional races ranged from sporadic to minimal. So these papers voluntarily forfeited the readership they might have attracted if they had hyped up the mid-terms as The Most Important Election in Our Nation’s History.

Anyway, that wasn’t what Ace was talking about. He was explaining the media’s shameless overselling of Obama, and you ought to read the whole thing.


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